FBC Columbiana’s Sarah Elizabeth Shelton to be on WMU’s National Acteens Panel

Published 4:08 pm Friday, January 26, 2024

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By RACHEL RAIFORD | Staff Writer

COLUMBIANA – Sarah Elizabeth Shelton of the First Baptist Church of Columbiana has been named to the 2024 National Acteens Panel.

According to WMU’s official website, “Acteens was commissioned to empower young women to take part in the mission of God.”

Acteens guides teenage girls, in grades 7-12, to become actively involved in missions and ministry. Shelton has been an Acteen for seven years, serving as a Mission Friend and GA prior to that.

Shelton expressed the gratitude she has for her Acteens leaders throughout her time with them at FBC of Columbiana. She says that the church’s leaders have helped shape her through “the most fundamental service experiences.”

“They have prepared me in countless aspects of service and missions,” Shelton said. “They have taught me how to be flexible and adaptable while on the missions field, (and) how to communicate the gospel with all ages, in different circumstances.”

She spoke on her experiences through missions, and how much of an impact they have made on her life. These experiences have prepared her to serve on the 2024 National Acteens Panel.

Being selected for the National Acteens Panel, Shelton will also serve at a national Women’s Missionary Union event where she will have the chance to meet missionaries and other national leaders involved in missions. In addition, she will have the privilege of speaking at churches and events throughout the state of Alabama.

While speaking at these churches, Shelton will be able to connect with Acteens nationwide, something that she is most excited for.

“Being able to build relationships with other young women who have the same spiritual beliefs as me is such an exciting venture that I can’t wait to begin,” Shelton said.

Shelton is involved in her church’s student ministry, where she has served on countless mission trips and church events. Her involvement is something her fellow congregation members have spoken very highly of. Anita Miller, a member of FBC of Columbiana, spoke positively of her experiences with Shelton at church.

“She has served in some of the most extraordinary ways,” Miller said. “She has been able to let God use her. She enjoys giving back to her church (and) to her community.”

Miller has also expressed her excitement for Shelton’s upcoming time on the Acteens panel—of which, Shelton was one of three teenagers chosen.

During her time on the panel, she will be a part of WMU’s Missions Celebration and Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN in June. As one of WMU’s Panelists, Shelton will have opportunities to grow in leadership while sharing her own ideas for the future of Acteens.

Shelton hopes to bring something new to the panel, including the importance of worshiping through music.

“I hope to contribute a new perspective on how important music is to reaching different parts of the mind, body and soul,” Shelton said. “Worship music and being able to lead worship has been the most integral aspect of my spiritual journey.”

Shelton has not only made a difference in her church, but also in her community. She is hopeful and excited for her time on the Panel, and her church feels the same.

“She is a very good, very deserving girl,” Miller said. “We are very proud of her, and we just love her.”